As the new Daiymo, or crime lord of Tatooine, Boba Fett can’t seem to catch a break. When he was a bounty hunter, things seemed to be simple.
He scored a bounty on a certain Correllian smuggler turned Rebel Alliance hero while his ex-girlfriend was playing chess with the entire galaxy.
Even after falling into the sarlacc pit, thanks to the aforementioned smuggler, Fett seemed to live a simple nomadic life with the Tuskens he made friends with.
Now, he is dealing with Hutts, other bounty hunters, corrupt politicians, shady water vendors, and criminal syndicates. And the culmination of all those leads into a war with the Pyke Syndicate
Warning: Contains spoilers
While “Star Wars” shines a light on the politics or battles between galactic factions, shows like the “Book of Boba Fett” and the “Mandalorian” shed a light on the criminal underworld of a Galaxy far, far, away. Another “Star Wars” show that has shed that light is “The Clone Wars” animated series.
Like the series, the “Book of Boba Fett” shows that corruption is a very powerful ally since it is subtle and makes a big impact when it appears.
At the beginning of the latest episode, “The Streets of Mos Espa,” Boba learns that after Jabba’s death, and under the rule of Bib Fortuna, the former majordomo, the city of Mos Espa has been split among three families. The Trandoshans rule the city center, the Aqualish run the Worker’s District and the Klatooinians operate from the starport and upper sprawl.
Jabba’s former droid tells Fett that, since Bib did not have the same stroke as Jabba, he relied on alliances and tributes which brought money to Ithorian Mayor Mok Shaiz. The droid also mentions that everyone is waiting to see what kind of leader Fett is. It is also here that Boba starts to realize why the mayor did not give him tribute.
Additionally like the “Clone Wars,” this episode shows different perspectives of its characters. For instance, the water vendor who comes unannounced to Boba to air his grievances on a gang of cyborgs stealing his water.
At first, the show does an amazing job at getting the viewer to sympathize with the old man since he needs money to make a living in the worker’s district. But when Fett confronts the cyborg biker gang, they turn out to be poor or unemployed youths trying to survive with very little. After offering the youths to work for him, Fett learns that the vendor has been charging people 1300 credits for water which infuriates him.
It is with this scene that I realized that the vendor was playing victim to get Fett to eliminate them. Furthermore, he also criticized Fett’s leadership by telling him that no one respects him. And at that point, the viewer, and Boba, sympathizes with the cyborgs led by a young woman named Drash (portrayed by Sophie Thatcher).
Being a street smart businessman, Fett proves his stroke as Daiymo by paying the crooked vendor 500 credits and telling him to slash his prices. Hilariously, Fett tells the man to accept his terms or he could take his business to Mos Eisley.
I feel that this scene shows Boba ruling with respect rather than with fear, or perhaps with corruption. The water vendor was likely profiting off Bib Fortuna who, as mentioned by the droid at the beginning, had Mos Espa divided under three families.
Fortuna, Mok Shaiz, and the water vendor were probably getting more money in their pockets while the worker’s district was undergoing a recession.
Boba, ruling with respect, used logic to question as to why the vendor would charge so much for water which is needed by most organisms to survive the harsh Tatooine desert. It is no wonder why the former bounty hunter did not want to head to Mos Espa on a litter and unsteady walk on his two feet.He wants the people of Mos Espa to know that, in a way, he is one of them.
During a Flashback scene while once again bathing in a Bacta Tank, Boba is shown to be leaving the Tusken encampment. Traveling on a Bantha and armed with his gaderffii stick and cycler rifle, Fett heads to a local town where the Pykes are located.
He speaks with a Pyke about the protection agreement but the Pyke mentions that he is paying the Nikto riders (seen from the last two episodes) for protection. The Pyke notes that he wouldn’t mind paying the Tuskens, who have claim to the Dune Sea, but he does not want to pay both parties with concern that he might be taken advantage of.
Boba declares that he will take care of the Niktos. When Fett heads back to the encampment, he sees that his adopted Tusken brethren have been massacred by the Nikto riders. Saddened by the death of the nomadic people who helped him, Boba cremates them and pays his respects. The flashback scene fades away and Boba is yanked out of his bacta slumber by the ruthless wookie Black Krrsantan.
The former bounty hunter brawls with his former associate he worked with while under the employ of Darth Vader in the comic series. The wookie gets the better of Fett but thanks to the help of Drash and her fellow cyborgs and Fennec, they capture him into the rancor den underneath Jabba’s palace.
The next day, the Twins come to the doorstep of Jabba’s Palace to apologize to Boba. They tell him that they were both deceived and that someone else is trying to lay claim to Jabba’s territory and that the Mok Shaiz was behind the machinations.
The Twins advise Boba that they do not want to have anything to do with Tatooine since they see it as a “worthless rock” and that war and bloodshed would be bad for business. As a result of the Hutt’s terms, Boba frees Black Krrsantan. As a token of their apology to the former bounty hunter, the Hutts gift him with a rancor.
The rancor trainer (portrayed by Danny Trejo) educates Boba on how rancors are emotionally complex creatures and peaceful unless threatened. He also notes that there were legends of the witches of Dathomir riding them through the forests.
Having heard this, Boba wants to learn how to ride the rancor and bond with it. To explain his enthusiasm, Boba tells the trainer that he had ridden beasts bigger than the rancor before, which is a reference of Boba riding a creature during the Star Wars Holiday Special. As Boba bonds with the creature, Jabba’s droid tells Boba that the Mayor has announced that he remains unavailable for the next 20 days.
Not satisfied, Boba, Fennec and the cyborg gang head to Mok Shaiz’s office to demand to see him. After Fennec threatens the mayor’s majordomo, the aide to the mayor pretends that he could expedite their meeting and runs to the mayor’s office only to lock himself in and escape from the outside.
The next scene shows the majordomo driving away in a landspeeder to escape Fett and Fennec who order the Drash and her cyborgs to chase him throughout the mean streets of Mos Espa. This scene reminded me of “Back to the Future” when Marty McFly was being chased by Biff and his gang.
After the cyborgs damage the majordomo’s car, the political aid spins out of control and crashes into a crate of fruit which is similar to how Biff crashed into a truck full of manure. It is here that Boba finds out that the mayor has been in bed with the Pyke Syndicate and they are the ones who want to claim Jabba’s territory.
Towards the end of the episode, the Pykes are seen arriving at Tatooine in huge numbers and out for blood. One of the cyborgs reports back to Boba and the former bounty hunter and Fennec prepare for war.
As I have mentioned in the last review, if anyone did the Pykes wrong or had some dealings with them, they had better do everything in their power to rectify the issue or face the consequences. Almost anyone in the Star Wars universe would agree that whether you were a noble Jedi Knight, a merciless Sith Lord, a hero of the Rebel Alliance, or an ruthless Imperial Moff, you had better have a damn good reason to deal with the Pykes or ruffle their feathers. And it seems that Mok Shaiz, the Mayor of Mos Espa has done just that much to the ire of Boba who has had history with the Pykes in the past as seen in the last episode.
Knowing the Pykes, I am expecting the next four episodes to be explosive and full of twists and turns. And what of the flashback scenes involving the Pykes? Did they tip off the Nikto biker gang to slaughter the Tuskens so that they could lay claim to the Dune Sea and continue to ship spice across it?
You can stream the latest episode of “The Book of Boba Fett” on Disney+.